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Tuition Remission for Faculty and Professional Staff

Policy Number: HR-22
Effective Date: April 2014
Responsible Officer: President, The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University

PURPOSE

This policy sets forth the terms and conditions governing the Tuition Remission benefit available to eligible Professional Staff Members of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University. The Tuition Remission benefit offers development opportunities to Professional Staff Members by providing tuition assistance for credit courses taken at Drexel University.

 

APPLICABILITY

This policy applies to all Professional Staff Members of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, including employees classified as exempt and non-exempt under the provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

 

IMPLEMENTATION

Implementation of this policy is the responsibility of the Department of Human Resources.

 

ADMINISTRATIVE OVERSIGHT

The President of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University official responsible for the administration of this policy.

 

POLICY

The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University provides Tuition Remission to eligible full-time Professional Staff Members to enhance their occupational proficiencies and provide opportunities for professional development.

 

DEFINITIONS

Eligible Employees are full-time Professional Staff Members of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University..

Full-Time Employee is an employee who is regularly scheduled to work 35 - 40 hours per week or 100% appointment.

Professional Staff Member is defined as an individual employed in any non-faculty category by the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, including an individual who is deemed to be either exempt or non-exempt under the provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and/or applicable state law.

Tuition Remission provides eligible Faculty and Professional Staff Members with a tuition waiver for selected Drexel University academic programs providing all requirements are met.

Academy refers to the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, but does not include its affiliated entities.

 

PROCEDURES

  1. Scope of Benefit
    1. Tuition Remission covers the cost of tuition only.  The University will waive the General Fee for Eligible Employees.
    2. Schools and programs to which this benefit does not apply include but are not limited to the following:
      1. College of Medicine M.D. program;
      2. Executive MBA program and the MBA Online program;
      3. Any degree or program in the School of Law;
      4. Any program that allows full-time enrollment for a flat fee.

      The Academy reserves the right to determine, without notice, that other schools or programs are eligible or ineligible for purposes of this benefit.  Prior to enrollment, Eligible Employees should check with Human Resources to confirm that the Tuition Remission benefit is applicable to the school and program in which they plan to enroll.

    3. The Academy reserves the right to limit enrollment by Eligible Employees to fifteen percent (15%) of the total enrollment in a course.
    4. Eligible Employees may receive one hundred percent (100%) Tuition Remission for up to a maximum of eleven (11) undergraduate course credits or eight (8) graduate course credits per term.
  2. Eligibility
    1. Eligibility to receive Tuition Remission is effective upon employment and is available to cover charges appearing on the Eligible Employee’s electronic bill with payment due dates on or after the Eligible Employee’s date of employment. Any charges due prior to the Eligible Employee’s first date of employment will not be eligible for Tuition Remission.
    2. Professional Staff Members who are regularly scheduled to work fewer than forty (40) hours per week or who have less than 100% appointment are not eligible to receive Tuition Remission.
    3. Professional Staff Members in unpaid leave status are not eligible to receive Tuition Remission.
    4. To be eligible for Tuition Remission, Eligible Employees may not be registered as full-time students. The Office of the Provost establishes the number of credit hours that an individual must take in order to be classified as a full-time student.  In accordance with the Undergraduate Student Full-time/Part-time Status Policy Statement, an undergraduate student who is enrolled for twelve (12) or more credit hours per term is deemed a full-time student.  In accordance with the Graduate Full-Time/Part-Time Status Policy, a graduate student who is enrolled for nine (9) or more credit hours per term is deemed a full-time student.
    5. Retired employees are eligible to receive the same Tuition Remission for which they were eligible immediately prior to retirement.
    6. An Eligible Employee who receives Tuition Remission and subsequently withdraws from the associated class after the drop/add period has expired will lose the benefit for that class.  In such an instance, the amount of the Tuition Remission attributable to the class from which the employee has withdrawn will be rescinded and the Eligible Employee will be responsible for paying the full cost of tuition, as well as any related fees, for that class.  A hold will be placed on the Eligible Employee’s student account and the employee will have their Tuition Remission benefit suspended until the debt has been repaid.
    7. An Eligible Employee who receives Tuition Remission and subsequently receives a grade of “F” in any coursework paid for by Tuition Remission will have their Tuition Remission benefit suspended for two (2) academic terms.   Eligible Employees will have the option of paying the full cost of tuition and fees for classes in lieu of the two-term Tuition Remission suspension. 
    8. If an Eligible Employee voluntarily resigns from employment prior to the end of a term, Tuition Remission will end as of the date the Eligible Employee ceases employment and the employee will be responsible for the prorated cost of tuition and fees for the remainder of the term.   
    9. If an Eligible Employee is involuntarily terminated from employment for cause or performance, his or her Tuition Remission benefit will end as of the date the Eligible Employee ceases employment and the employee will be responsible for the prorated cost of tuition and fees for the remainder of the term.
    10. If an Eligible Employee is involuntarily terminated from employment due to layoff or other reduction-in-force, she or he will continue to receive Tuition Remission for the then current term of enrollment only.  Eligibility to receive the Tuition Remission benefit for any subsequent term ceases.
    11. Eligible Employees may not enroll in a course paid for with Tuition Remission if the course  conflicts with his or her regularly scheduled work hours, except that an Eligible Employee’s direct supervisor at his or her discretion and with the approval of the department head, may waive this condition under the following circumstances:
      1. The associated course will directly benefit the Eligible Employee's job performance or will increase his or her potential and value to the University; or
      2. The associated course is required for the Eligible Employee’s completion of their course of study, is only offered during her or his regularly scheduled work hours, and an equivalent course is not offered outside of those regularly scheduled work hours.

      When such a waiver is granted, the Eligible Employee may not be enrolled in more than one course per term (undergraduate or graduate) for which attendance is required during regularly scheduled work hours.

    12. An Eligible Employee receiving Tuition Remission does so voluntarily, and course attendance and related course activities and studies do not constitute work as defined by the Fair Labor Standards Act, the workers compensation act or any other wage and hour laws or regulations otherwise applicable to University employees.
  3. Application
    1. All Eligible Employees who plan to use Tuition Remission must apply for and be accepted into the applicable University program.
    2. All Eligible Employees who plan to use Tuition Remission for undergraduate coursework must apply for federal and state aid through the University’s Office of Financial Aid by completing a Free Application for Federal Student Aid by August 1 prior to the academic year during which Tuition Remission is being sought.  Tuition Remission is awarded only upon completion of the application for such aid.  Institutional, state and federal grants and scholarships are applied to tuition and fees before Tuition Remission is applied.  Funds received from a Pell Grant may be applied toward books and necessary educational supplies purchased through the University bookstore before any remainder is applied to tuition.
    3. All Eligible Employees must complete, print and sign the Tuition Remission application for the academic year during which she or he is applying to receive Tuition Remission.  Incomplete applications or applications containing inaccurate information will not be processed.
    4. Eligible Employees receiving Tuition Remission are fully responsible for any tax liability incurred as a result of receipt of this benefit.  University Payroll will make the appropriate withholdings in connection with the Tuition Remission benefit.  Additional information is also available at the University’s Payroll website.  Tax-related information regarding Tuition Remission is provided to faculty and Professional Staff Members as a courtesy and is not intended as tax advice.  A faculty or Professional Staff Member receiving Tuition Remission should consult his or her own tax advisor regarding the tax implications of this benefit.

 

AT-WILL EMPLOYMENT NOT AFFECTED

Notwithstanding anything to the contrary stated in this policy, nothing herein is intended to alter the at-will status of a Professional Staff Member. The Academy at all times retains the right to terminate any at-will faculty or Professional Staff Member at any time for any lawful reason, or for no reason at all.